For many hardscape professionals, the upcoming winter months can be a slow time of year in terms of hardscape installations. However, there are marketing activities that you can do in the fall that take advantage of the seasonal maintenance needs and buying patterns of homeowners that can boost sales now, as well as kick-start the upcoming new year.
Services you can promote now:
- Cleaning and sealing: Now is an excellent time to clean and seal pavers in order to protect them from stains that could occur from the debris that accumulates during the fall, as well as the corrosive properties of deicing agents used during the winter. Contact customers who had paver installations 3-5 years ago. Promote the importance of resealing pavers periodically, and let them know you offer cleaning and sealing services. To entice them, you may even want to offer “special pricing” for existing customers. You can also promote cleaning and sealing in any of your advertising efforts, as well as on social media.
>> Learn more about the lucrative business of cleaning and sealing pavers
>> Instructional video
- Fire feature installations: As the temperature drops, we begin moving into “fire” season. Promote photos of fire pits and outdoor fireplaces on your social media and website, as well as in any of your advertising and direct-marketing efforts. You may want to consider doing a special mailer to anyone who previously had you install a patio. Build repeat business with homeowners who may be ready to upgrade.
- Gas retrofitting: Homeowners with wood-burning fire pits or fireplaces are often interested in converting their fire features to gas-burning units or retrofitting them with a gas igniter system. To make it easy for the homeowner, you can also partner with a plumber to handle the more complicated conversions.
Plan ahead for the slow season:
- Home and garden shows: Check for upcoming home and garden shows in your area and look for strategic sponsorship and booth opportunities. Do your research and pick the show or shows that will run during your slow season and will give you the most bang for your marketing buck. Check the demographics of show attendees so that you’re sure to reach the caliber of homeowners that would most likely be interested in hardscapes.
- Network with builders: The latter part of fourth quarter is typically slow for homebuilders. Work with your Belgard rep to set up a date to go on a sales blitz to visit homebuilders either on job sites or at their corporate offices. Be sure to ask your rep about the availability of leave-behind marketing materials. Bring a notebook on your sales calls so that you can jot down any items that will require follow-up. Remember to follow up in a timely manner with a thank-you and any requested information.
- Educational opportunities: Look for continuing education opportunities that you can attend during your slow months to help kick-start the upcoming new year. Invest in yourself by getting certified in a new installation technique, taking a sales or marketing class, or finding a one-day seminar on a topic like time management. Belgard offers a number of educational opportunities, such as Belgard University, Lunch & Learn classes, and the new Contractor/Dealer Road Show.